Game two of the Rockies vs the Mariners was today at noon and Isotopes Park was opening two hours early.
One of the things you learn when you attend Rockies batting practices(or most teams for that matter), is that when the previous game was an evening game and the next game is an early one, it’s rare for the batting cages to be out on the field. Usually In this case the players take batting practice inside.
Being that I’m nobody special the planets didn’t align for me and the playing field was empty. That’s ok, that gave me the opportunity to take some pictures and work on snagg’n some autographs.
After I scoped out the park it seemed the place to be for getting autographs was leaning against the rails along the tunnel that leads into the innards of the stadium.
As I waited leaning on the railing I watched Brad Hawpe and Todd Helton walk in and out of the tunnel several times barely looking up and never stopping to sign. Moments later I stood there and witnessed Tulowitzki do the same thing.
Jason Giambi walked out of the tunnel.
Then he stopped and signed for one lucky kid.
I refuse to pass judgement on what I witnessed because it’s early on in the season and as I’ve mentioned before the best time to get autographs is the early part of spring training.
Also I’ve seen those same guys stop and sign many times. Most of getting autographs is luck and it boils down to being a the right place on the right day at the right time.
But as always…. “I Calls ’em as I sees ’em”
The first player kind enough to stop and autograph a baseball for me was Tommy Everidge.
Tommy plays first base for the Mariners.
I mentioned to Clint at Rockies Fest I’d be at the game in Albuquerque and when he saw me he looked up, smiled and said “Hey”.
Don Bayler signed for everyone as well.
Left handed pitcher Greg Smith.
Chris Iannetta was kind enough to sign my Rockies magazine.
Ichiro Suzuki out warming up.
Jack and Kim enjoying the warm weather.
It was fun to relax with the wife and Jack and Kim and just watch the game.
Here’s a couple though.
Here’s a link to Giambi’s hit:–—> Jason Giambi’s homer in the 5th inning.
I think to myself…”Wow…there’s a Giambi homer just sitting there untouched” and I continue to watch the game.
In the 6th inning Brad Eldred blasts a homer into the batter’s eye and it lands almost exactly where Giambi’s homer did but rolled a few feet below it.
Here’s a link to Eldred’s hit: ——> Brad Eldred’s homer in the 6th inning.
I think to myself…”Holy crap, now there are two Rockies home run balls sitting in there untouched”.
From that moment forward with the Rockies comfortably in the lead the game was over for me. I found myself staring at the batter’s eye thinking about those two baseballs. I was talking to my buddy Jack and mentioned the baseballs and the fact that they were just sitting there untouched.
I realized at that point that I couldn’t leave Isotopes stadium without those two home run baseballs in my possession.
Jack and I got up and walked over to the batter’s eye and started to scope it out from all angles. We decided there were three possible ways into that pot of gold.
The first one would require me running along the front of the outfield in gravel with total exposure from the front.
The railing I would have to hop over and drop down from was to the right of Jack pictured here with hottie Marge Simpson.
The third possible way into the batter’s eye would be to come in from the left as the batter sees it. That required two fence hops in and two fence hops out and had a little more visibility than I was comfortable with.
Here’s another view of the batter’s eye and the good sized crowd sitting on the berm.
Anyways, I decided that hopping the fence next to Marge Simpson was the best way to go. My plan was to wait till the exact moment the game ended and make my move.
Krista had my camera so she was able to capture video of me snagging both game home run balls.
COWABUNGA DUDE…What a rush!
I was in and out of there in less than a minute and as far as I can tell I was smooth like butter because I strutted out of Isotopes Park with both of those baeballs in my possession.
Here are the two home run balls retreived from the batter’s eye just as the game finished with a Rockies win 10-4 over the Mariners.
I was the featured story on one of my favorite baseball websites, MYGAMEBALLS.COM
CLICK HERE to read the article written by Alan Schuster.
All I can say is had I not taken the chance and grabbed those two game homers it would have grinded on me for the rest of my life.
I’m afraid that with a haul like this I may have set the bar for my own personal season a bit high.
Do it and make damn sure your having fun while you’re doing it.
D..The Rockpile Ranter